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Pakistan Defies New War Strategy As Afghans Cheer

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    Posted: 22-Aug-2017 at 10:27pm
US President Donald Trump’s decision to intensify US involvement in Afghanistan has met with doubts and frustration in Pakistan as officials in Afghanistan widely welcomed the new war plan and foresee it a step forward towards putting more pressure on the militant groups and countries that Afghan government believesare harboring the insurgents particularly the Taliban group.

As international reactions on President Trump’s war strategy on Afghanistan coming in, a number of Pakistani military officials have said that the new war strategy announced today was not something new.

Pakistani military officials have claimed that the terrorists are not enjoying safe havens in Pakistani soil, suggesting Trump to come up with evidences to prove that Pakistan was harboring militant groups in its territory.

“We realized that negotiations with the terrorists will not yield an outcome, therefore we preferred to launch operation in the tribal areas. Today no terroristis present in anywhere in Pakistan,” said former Pakistani military officer Assad Munir. “If Trump and his aides believe that terrorists have hideouts here (in Pakistan), then he should bring evidence to prove it.”

2014 US Troops Withdraw Was a Mistake

Talking to TOLOnews in a debate with Pakistani analysts on Tuesday, former Afghan Chief of Army Staff Gen. Sher Mohammad Karimi said the withdrawal of international troops in 2014 from Afghanistan fueled enemy’s war machine and persuaded them to intensify their war.

“The US decision of evacuating its troops from Afghanistan in 2014 was wrong, because the Afghan soldiers were continuing their military training in those days and the American forces were supporting Afghanistan in the fight against terrorism,” Karimi said. â€œThe withdrawal of the international community from Afghanistan was followed by some disappointments. The Afghan security forces were ready to defend the country but the enemy’s moral was growing higherbecause of the withdrawal.”

Other Pakistani politician said in the debate that in the new strategy, President Trump has not designated Pakistan officially as state sponsor of terrorism and that the he did not announce a possible aid cut to Islamabad.

“We failed to defeat terrorism in our country. We failed to bring reforms in ourmadrasas (religious schools). We should be realistic,” said Afrasyab Khatak, chairman of Pakistan’s Awami Milli Party. â€œI think Pakistan’s Afghanistan policy is not working properly and the support to the Taliban is not right; it was wrong even if Trump had not mention it.”

On the ground, Trump announcement of adding to the number of US forces in Afghanistan within the framework of the new war strategy has sparked hopes and optimism among the Afghans who are paying heavy prices on a daily basis in the campaign against insurgency.

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